First Day of Summer is a Joke Email

Here at Stay at Home Sad headquarters things are going as smooth as can be expected. Kids have been fed and now are happily entertaining themselves. I have an undetermined amount of time to get a few things done. This is probably not too unlike your workplace. I have bosses who really don’t know what they need done. All they know is they can’t do it for themselves. See, you don’t have to be stuck at home with 2 or 3 kids to relate to what I’m saying here. My bosses are my kids (to some extent). And, you people who say, “Hey, I’m the boss of my kids.” I just have to say -“right”. So I have very fickled bosses. When we get started on some project that can’t wait, at a moment’s notice they want to move to another project that can’t wait. It’s all very inefficient. See, I knew you could relate.

See, good reader, you don’t have to be stuck at home with kids to be able to relate to my world. I distract my kids by giving them something shiny and red to play with. You distract your bosses by giving them a colorful powerpoint presentation to look at. Everyone’s happy and we have our respective bosses off our backs for another day.

Now what should I do with my morsel of time. Now that the troops of red rubber ball have rolled into my house and liberated me from the totalitarian regime I call my children, what shall I do with my new freedom? Hey, why don’t I check my email and see if there are any messages from other liberated peoples. When my email is checked, I realize that I have an email from my dad.

My dad is going to be 82 this week and does an ok job of being on the interwires. He’s a retired farmer with large farmer hands and I’m amazed that he does a good job typing on the keyboard. We’re now a couple years past the joke of the mouse being named after a mouse and I can actually send him a picture of the kids and it will be opened. What I’ve been trying to work on lately is to get my dad to stop forwarding junk emails and jokes to me. And this day is not unlike every day where my dad has sent along 2 joke emails and 2 political emails.

In the past, my dad used to call and ask if I got the email he just sent and ask if I’d read it. At some point, I stopped opening them. I told him I don’t really have time to read them. I think he still sends them because he thinks its a bit funny that he’s annoying me (that’s sort of how our family shows affection -annoying one another). This day he calls me and actually asks if I’ve read the joke about Summer – since it’s the first day of summer. I let him know that I’m too busy to open these emails every day. My dad scoffs at this and thinks I’m being high and mighty and how much valuable time would it take to just read a simple email, he says out loud to my ear.

All of a sudden, I have a break through. I have a realization – a vision – of how to explain this to my dad. I ask my dad if he can think back thirty years ago to when he was farming potatoes. He can. I ask him what he might have been doing on the first day of summer. He thinks he might be cultivating the potatoes. I ask him, “If I ran out to the field while you were driving the tractor and yelled to stop, would you stop.” He says he would because it may be an emergency. Once his tractor is stopped, I would produce a letter that just came in the mail from one of my aunts. I ask my dad, “If I were to stop you while you were in the middle of your field work and ask to read a joke that just came in the mail from Aunt Karen, how would you feel about that.” Then I ask him how he would feel about me running out to the field three times every morning to read a letter that was either a joke, a political comment, or a prayer for the troops.

I was very proud of my analogy. There was a long quiet pause from my dad. Then he said, “Are you on a tractor right now?” “No, I’m not.” I responded. And my time was up. My bosses were calling for me to get back to work.

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